“MISK”..Protecting children and mothers for a healthier Yemen
He watches with his own eyes the withering of his sick child's body and suffers silently for his inability to save his life. He lives in a state of constant anxiety, despair and fear, waiting for his child to take his last breath in front of his eyes.
This was the case of "Mushir Amin", who lives in one of the neighborhoods of "Al-Muzaffar" district in the city of Taiz. He cleans cars for a pittance, barely covering the minimum livelihood for his family.
The body of his two-year-old child, Louay, withers with the passage of days, and obtaining health care is a great challenge which needs someone to relieve him of this suffering.
In an instant, the gates of Hell were closed and the gate of hope opened in Mushir's face. He became overjoyed when his neighbor told him that ending the suffering of his child "Louay" was very possible. He just had to head now to Al-Wafa'a Health Center and he would get free medical services.
This is what happened, as "Mushir" rushed to the center seeking emergency help to save the life of his emaciated child. He found before him a project to promote multiple, integrated and sustainable nutrition and health services "Mother and Child Health", known as the “MISK” Project.
Thanks to this project, implemented by HUMAN ACCESS with the support of Doctors Worldwide Turkey (DWWT), Louay was given the necessary medication and nutritional supplements that saved him from severe and fatal malnutrition.
After months of treatment, food and home follow-up, "Louay" is now playing and having fun like his peers as his parents looking at him with admiration. They did not expect that their child would blossom again and enter a new and better phase in life.
11,381 children and women benefited within two months
Maternal and child health is an essential pillar of the health system. Since the escalation of the conflict in Yemen in 2015, severe malnutrition among young children and mothers has increased. There are 2.9 million children and women at risk of malnutrition, according to UN estimates.
Among the most affected governorates is Taiz, with a health system on the verge of collapse and ongoing crises that continue to threaten the health and nutrition of children and mothers. Urgent interventions to provide healthy nutrition services to the most vulnerable families have become crucial.
For this reason, the project to enhance multiple, integrated and sustainable nutrition and health services "Mother and Child Health", known as the Third Phase (MISK) project, is implemented by HUMAN ACCESS with the support of Doctors Worldwide Turkey (DWWT).
The project started in August 2022 and will end in January 2023 for the third phase. It provides its services through the Al-Wafa’a Health Center in Al-Mudhaffar district, Taiz Governorate. Supporting and operating a health facility in Yemen is very important, with less than half of health facilities operating at full capacity, according to UN agencies.
The project provides life-saving emergency nutrition interventions for children under the age of five, and pregnant and lactating women, in addition to improving the state of public health services in general, and maternal and child health in particular.
The aim is to contribute to reducing deaths and diseases associated with acute malnutrition among children under five, and pregnant and lactating women by scaling up high-quality life-saving nutritional interventions.
This includes raising awareness of disease prevention, child care and nutrition, and contributing to reducing maternal and child morbidity and mortality by providing life-saving reproductive health services to women.
The project was able to protect 11,381 children and women in just two months. This number makes everyone feel proud of this project and its services, which include screening tests for acute malnutrition and treatment for children and mothers.
This is in addition to integrated reproductive health services, antenatal care and obstetrics, medical consultations, laboratory and radiology, immunization and vaccinations, emergency, health education and awareness services, and advice on optimal child nutrition.
The risks of child and maternal malnutrition
Malnutrition harms a child's physical and cognitive development, especially during the first two years of his/her life. Preventing malnutrition and addressing its devastating effects begins with the good health of the mother. Diseases and a poor sanitary environment are major factors for child malnutrition.
Malnourished children are also more susceptible to disease, as every child suffering from malnutrition also means that a family is struggling to survive, according to UN organizations.
Hence comes the importance of the project to promote multiple, integrated and sustainable nutrition and health services "Mother and Child Health", implemented by HUMAN ACCESS in Taiz, with the support of the Turkish organization Doctors Worldwide (DWWT).
Years of conflict and economic collapse have pushed millions to the brink, with rising levels of food insecurity. Yemen is considered one of the most dangerous places in the world for the growth of children, and the rate of malnutrition among women and children is among the highest in the world.
In a special statement, Dr. Abdulwase Alwasei, Secretary General of HUMAN ACCESS, said that the MISK project was able to make a difference in the lives of beneficiary children and mothers quickly thanks to the generous support of DWWT, which contributes to saving many lives.
For his part, Director General of HUMAN ACCESS, Riyadh Mohammed, said in a special statement that the MISK project is one of the most important humanitarian interventions to extend a helping hand to the most vulnerable population and alleviate some of the suffering experienced by civilians in Yemen.